Leaders are women who have served as role models in SNLP programs. They represent excellence in service, activism, and creativity, and are exceptional in both voice and action. They are appointed for their commitment to making change, forging new paths, and redefining leadership. SNLP students use their interaction with Leaders to examine the way in which different types of leadership can be cooperative, accountable, ethical, and effective. Below are some of the extraordinary Leaders who have met the young women of SNLP since 2002:
Peggy Shepherd (2011): Environmental activist in Harlem. Founder and Executive Director of WEAct, and recipient of the 10th Annual Heinz Award for the Environment and the 2008 Jane Jacobs Medal for Lifetime Achievement award.
Ai-Jen Poo (2011): Organizer for Domestic Workers United and recently noted as one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world April, 2012.
Melissa Mark-Viverito (2010): NYC Council Member representing the 8th District (East Harlem). First Puerto Rican woman elected to represent her district. Serves as Chair of the Parks and Recreation Committee as well as Co-Chair of the NYC Council Progressive Caucus and Co-Vice Chair of the Black, Latino and Asian Caucus.
Alexis Torres-Fleming (2010): Youth organizer and founder, Youth Ministries for Peace and Justice in the South Bronx.
**Diane Nash (2010): Civil rights leader from the 1960s, a founder of SNCC, student of non-violence, led sit-ins to desegregate lunch counters in Nashville, and major participant in the Southern Christian Leadership Conferences' Birmingham campaign and Selma Voting Rights Movement.
Wangechi Mutu (2009): Kenyan born artist, currently lives and works in Brooklyn. She uses mixed media (painting, sculpture, collages) to explores themes of race and gender through depictions of the female body in exaggerated states.
Brenda Dardar Robichaux (2009): Principal Chief of the Houma Nation, a 17,000 member nation in Southern Louisiana. She led support efforts for tribe members displaced by hurricanes Katrina and Ike as well as petitioning to have the Houma Nation seen as a federally recognized tribe.
*Vanita Gupta (2007): Civil rights attorney who lead the now famous Tulia TX case in which 38 wrongly convicted African-Americans were exonerated. Winner, 2004 Reebok Human Rights Award. ACLU Criminal justice attorney.
*Cecile Richards (2007): President of Planned Parenthood Federation of American, former labor organizer, reproductive rights activist, and, like her mother Ann Richards, worked in the political sphere as deputy chief of staff for Nancy Pelosi.
*Alice Walker (2007): Author and activist who coined the term “womanist” which she defines as one who "appreciates and prefers women’s culture, women’s emotional flexibility…women’s strength".
Felicia Berland Hyatt (2006): Holocaust survivor born in Chelm, Poland in 1920. Her book, Close Calls, chronicles her experience as a prisoner and escape from Auschwitz, and her imprisonment in a Czech labor camp.
Cheri Honkala (2005): Anti-poverty activist, founder and Executive Director of Kensington Welfare Rights Union, leading role in Economic Human Rights Campaign, the March of the Americas, multiple housing takeovers, and first-ever summit of 100 anti-poverty organizations.
Winona LaDuke (2004): Longtime environmentalist and indigenous rights activist. Founding Director of White Earth Land Recovery Project. Green Party Vice Presidential candidate in 1996 and 2000.
Rachael Lloyd (2004): Founder of GEMS (Girls Education and Mentoring Service) an organization for young girls and women who are affected and exploited by the sex industry. Reebock Human Rights Award recipient 2005.
Rossana Rosado (2004): Journalist. Publisher and CEO of el diario/LA PRENSA, the oldest Spanish newspaper in the country and the largest Spanish language daily in the northeast.